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Wireless Security Cameras

What is a Wireless Camera?

Wireless Security Cameras are a combination of three components: A camera, a transmitter to send the signal, and a receiver to receive the signal. A Wireless Camera transmits video from a built-in transmitter to a receiver, which is in turn plugged into either a monitor or other recording device.
Wireless Cameras come all shapes and sizes; some look like traditional Security Cameras, while others are inconspicuous, Spy Cameras that resemble just about anything. The possibilities are as endless. Wireless Spy Cameras are true masters of disguise, like a chameleon, they observe everything while blending effortlessly with their surroundings.

Can I make a Regular Camera Wireless?

A separate transmitter and receiver can be added to any camera to make it wireless. By choosing your camera, transmitter, and receiver separately, you can design a system that fits your exact needs. Top Notch Surveillance  offers a full line of Wireless Video Cameras for any scenario imaginable.
Some transmitters and receivers can accept specialized antennas, such as High-Gain, Yagi, or Omni-Directional Antennas. The type of antenna you choose will determine your camera's optimal range.
High-Gain Directional Antennas are recommended for most long-range wireless video use. Yagi Antennas send or receive a propagated radio signal on the same axis as the corresponding Antenna on the other end (with Line-of-Sight visibility between the two whenever possible).
Omni-Directional Antennas are great for short range broadcasts because of their versatility. These antennas work with wireless equipment, which sends or receives a propagated radio signal in all directions simultaneously. This differs greatly from a High-Gain Directional Antenna, which is only capable of sending or receiving information on the same axis as the corresponding antenna on the other end.

How far can Wireless Cameras Transmit?

Wireless Cameras come all shapes and sizes and are capable of transmitting to different distances. The transmission range of a Wireless Camera is usually rated by use the Line-of-Sight (LOS). Standard Wireless Video Cameras have a range of about 700 feet LOS. The signal can be transmitted through most solid objects including glass, plastic, wood, fiberglass, and some metals, but the signal is attenuated. So the actual transmission range depends on the number and type of objects you are transmitting through, such as brick walls, concrete walls, trees, etc. An ordinary 700 ft. LOS Covert Camera can typically transmit signal through about 6 interior walls with ranges up to 300 feet and is designed to work comfortably in a building up to 6,000 square foot (home or office).

What is Line-of-Sight (LOS) Range?

Line-of-Sight (LOS) Range refers to the ideal broadcast range of wireless audio/video link (transmitter and receiver) systems. Line-of-sight means the range when there is a visible pathway between the transmitter antenna and the receiver antenna. Additionally, the Line-of-Sight specification indicates performance outdoor transmission distance of a wireless camera under absolute best conditions: (no walls, trees, or any obstructions). In other words, there is nothing between the transmitter and receiver, for example building top to building top.

Please be aware that just like home cordless telephones, TV reception, and cellular phones, Covert Video Cameras can be temperamental and will not operate properly if they are placed too close to another electronic device, such as a cordless phone, television, or microwave
What is the difference between various frequencies?

Most cameras operate on a 2.4 GHz frequency, as do cordless phones. There are three other frequencies: 2.4 GHz, 1.2 GHz, 900 MHz, 5.8 GHz, each with their own unique specifications.

2.4 GHz

A 2.4 GHz Wireless Spy Camera comes equipped with 4 channels. There is no tuning required. We generally recommend 2.4 GHz over 900 MHz because the overall video quality is better. Range varies from 200-700 feet, depending on environmental conditions.
Generally, the worst kind of interference a RF radio signal may encounter is another nearby radio signal operating at or close to its own frequency in the RF spectrum. These 2 (or more) signals then "compete" for use of this frequency. If there is any "winner," it will always be the stronger signal present. For example, a microwave oven is essentially an extremely powerful microwave transmitter tuned to the 2.4 GHz frequency range. Many cordless phones also operate on this frequency and may cause interference, if placed in close proximity to a Wireless Video Camera.

1.2 GHz

High resolution video transmission and outdoor medium range potential makes 1.2 GHz Wireless Video Systems a good choice for multiple system applications.
1.2 GHz makes a huge difference in the range and quality of video image received, especially when going through ceilings, floors and most walls. In an unobstructed site with no other electrical interference, you can expect to clearly transmit up to 300 feet.

900 MHz

This is an amateur band. An amateur license is required to operate. 4 channels are available in the 900 band. The signal goes to a dedicated receiver that is tuned from 902-930. 916.5 MHz is the standard transmitter setting; there are 3 other frequencies. Range varies from 200-700 feet or more depending on environmental conditions.
900 MHz receivers have a tuning knob that you must adjust to attain a clear, sharp picture. There is no interference between 900 MHz cordless phones and 900 MHz Wireless Surveillance Cameras.

5.8 GHz

5.8 GHz is the latest and greatest in CCTV Wireless Security Equipment. Record and view up to 4 channels of video with an operating frequency between 5725 ~ 5825 (4 Channels), with a range of up to 300 ft. with direct line-of-sight.
When using the 5.8 GHz frequency, you are not sharing a radio frequency that is considered to be part of the public band, eliminating interference from other 2.4 GHz devices. Plus, a 2.4 GHz Wireless Video Camera may only transmit a wireless signal up to 500 feet line of site, whereas a 5.8 GHz Wireless Video Camera sends a stronger signal up to 2,000 feet line of site.

Will other electronic devices interfere with Wireless Cameras?

The signal generated by a 2.4GHz Wireless Camera may be (but not always) disrupted by the 2.4GHz cordless phone or other 2.4 GHz devices. If you are not sure whether or not your cordless phone or any other 2.4 GHz system in your home or office interferes the wireless camera (cannot get good video signal), unplug power to your phone etc. to determine if that is the problem.
Your microwave oven might also generate a conflicting signal; your Wireless Video Camera and the microwave oven operate on the same frequency. This will not damage your camera.

What is the difference between a Wireless Camera and a Wireless Network Camera?

An ordinary Wireless Camera transmits its A/V data via RCA or COAX cable to a monitor or a recording device (either a VCR or DVR). If you want to view this data remotely, you would need to purchase a special kind of DVR that converts the image data to digital output, and has networking software to broadcast this digital data over a network.

Also called "IP Cameras" or "Ethernet Cameras," a Wireless Network Camera transmits its Audio/Video (A/V) signal via standard computer networking CAT5 cable. It has software built-in on its chip that allows anyone on the network to view the A/V data, just like a computer on a network. There is no special software needed to view the camera. You can view the images in an internet browser by pulling up the IP Address assigned to the camera. To record the video, you can use software such as ReCam - Network Camera Monitoring Software on any computer on the network.
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